What most authors do not understand is that the cover of their book is one of the most important and may even be the primary tool at marketing their books. Some may think that the book cover should be done through their style or created to their satisfaction, …which may or may not be right. Designing the cover so that it is unique (outside the norm) or exemplary in their genre may be a flop, and I will tell you why in a minute. After months or even years of writing, editing, rewriting, and being too particular with how the story goes, most authors write the “book description” and the “about the author” just so…almost as an afterthought. If you don’t have an idea about marketing start first with this article: Introduction to Book Cover Marketing
Here are the top 5 secrets to creating a cover that will market and sell your book:
- Front Cover – the genre of your book will determine your niche market, and as far as book covers go, you need to make sure that it is also genre-specific. Being unique may just not work. Imagine a fairy-tale-like, soft, and pastel-colored cover for a crime/horror fiction book. It does not create the intended atmosphere, which is to terrify, shock, disgust, or scare its readers. You would need to think of what will induce feelings of horror and fear.
The image, text, and other items on your front cover should all be cohesive, simple, easy to read, and uncluttered. It should be eye-catching but not distressing. You only get up to 5 seconds for a prospect to pick up your book. Don’t make it hard for him/her to comprehend the message you are conveying.
- The Book Description – Write in the third person, not as the author but as the promoter or the publisher of the book. This may be summarized into four words: hook, topic, emotion, and close.
- Hook – start the book description with a hook by quickly answering the question of why it’s a must-read.
- Topic – Detail the subject or subjects covered, what is the book about?
- Emotion – Set the mood. Write about what your readers will learn or how they’ll feel after reading your book. Provide the book’s benefits.
- Close – Leave the readers hanging, pique their interest, and wanting for more. Close by adding your final selling points and calling them into action.
- The About the Author – It is essential to write in the third person else you may end up seeming self-centered. Be creative, keep it short, and inject your brand.
- Start with a one-liner that sums up your profile – this may be the only line they’ll have time to read.
- Mention your credentials.
- If you can, add an endorsement from anyone well-known.
- Add something personal.
- Add a one-liner that’s painfully funny or colorful in your life.
If you should still have enough space (if this is on the back cover), encourage your readers to connect with you and mention your other book/s.
- The Spine – Make the most crucial text as large as possible to make it visible even from afar.
- Holistic – The Front Cover, Spine, and Back-Cover should feel unified; all the elements should be done consistently to have that professional finish.